The Product Backlog


  • Managing the product backlog.
  • Creating and prioritizing PBIs.
  • Linking artifacts: PBIs, tasks, and bugs.
  • Understanding impediments.

In Chapter 5, you examined the specifics of the artifacts in the Microsoft Visual Studio Scrum 1.0 process template: work items, queries, and reports. You saw how each one contributes to tracking a project. This chapter focuses on the product backlog, which is the list of requirements for a system. The product backlog is a dynamic list that grows and shrinks over the course of a project.

This chapter discusses a number of topics related to the product backlog: managing the product backlog; creating and prioritizing product backlog items (PBIs); linking PBIs, tasks, and bugs; and understanding impediments. Understanding these concepts will help your team control its product backlog.


Before learning how to create PBIs in TFS, it's important to consider the goal of the product backlog as a whole. The product backlog is the list of features that the product owner believes will make a great product.

While the product backlog defines the full product, the PBIs define the individual features. A larger product has more features than a smaller product, so it has more PBIs. How many PBIs should define a product? How many is too many? How many is too few? How do you write good PBIs? The product owner must answer all these questions before writing the PBIs.

Chapter 8 has a section titled ...

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